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Lyrical Ballads: With a Few Other Poems (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 31 Aug 2006

4.6 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (31 Aug. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780140424621
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140424621
  • ASIN: 0140424628
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 0.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 172,057 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"It is an edition of a formative work which all students and lovers of English poetry will warmly welcome.."From the reviews of the first edition-"The Times Educational Supplement --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Coleridge (1772-1834) has been criticized as a political turn-coat, drug addict and plagiarist whose wrecked career left only a handful of magical early poems. But the shaping influence of his highly imaginative criticism is now generally accepted,and his position, along with Wordsworth (1770-1850), as one of the two great progenitors of the English Romantic spirit is assured. A great innovator, Wordsworth permanently enlarged the range of English poetry both in subject matter and treatment.


Michael Schmidt is Professor of English and Director of the Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University. He is the author of the critical history LIVES OF THE POETS (1999), THE STORY OF POETRY (five volumes, 2001-), and THE FIRST POETS: LIVES OF THE ANCIENT GREEK POETS.


Inside This Book

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First Sentence
How a Ship having passed the Line was driven by Storms to the cold Country towards the South Pole; and how from thence she made her course to the tropical Latitude of the Great Pacific Ocean; and of the strange things that befell; and in what manner the Ancyent Marinere came back to his own Country. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

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Thank you Penguin, for publishing the original 1798 edition of Lyrical Ballads. Wordsworth was an inveterate revisor of his poems. Whenever Lyrical ballads was republished, he took the opportunity to revise poems, add extra ones and change the order in which the originals appeared. In this edition, we get his (and Coleridge's)original ideas. These are the poems of Wordsworth and Coleridge when they were young men and still radical in their poetics as well as their politics. Anyone interested in how these two giants of Romanticism and Radicalism developed, should own a copy of this edition of Lyrical Ballads. It is instructive to compare the version of the poems in this edition with those from the 1802 edition and later ones. Great stuff.
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I like this slim Penguin volume of the original, unrevised edition of Lyrical Ballads, from its apt cover painting of Tintern Abbey to editor Michael Schmidt`s brief, unintrusively informative three-page Note on the Text at the end.
Will & Sam (well, it`s quicker) were only in their late twenties when they decided to publish a joint collection of some of their informal poems, Wordsworth being the later reviser of this seminal anthology (eventually pushing the Mariner to a more tactful place nearer the end). Many are not all that lyrical, and few are strictly speaking ballads. No matter, it`s a perfect title for this unique venture, which upset a lot of august Augustan critics - though no doubt a smaller proportion of readers were quite so perplexed - back in 1798.
The four poems by Coleridge are The Dungeon, The Nightingale (in their different ways, remarkable both as poems and as polemics), The Foster-Mother`s Tale, and the still astounding The Rime of the Ancyent Marinere, with its ever-haunting line which never fails to excite and lure this reader in:

There was a Ship, quoth he

Yes? Then do tell us about it!
Coleridge`s strange tale in verse must have startled its first readers, some oddly reluctant for one reason or another to read the rest of the poems, others no doubt devouring them in one sitting.
The other nineteen poems, often only a page long, are by WW. It`s fascinating to see the very different sensibilities of the two then-friends (who later, alas, fell out), with Will the idealistic nature-lover writing in a loose, chatty style, Sam more the mystic, strange tensions at play in his already intense poetry.
There are one or two poems about vagrants and prisoners here, both poets evincing a gratifying sympathy for those fallen on hard times.
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Essential for all lovers of language, beauty, grace and soul. In their time, Wordsworth and Coleridge were more than daringly bold or strange - this was revolutionary. Taking poetry back to the more earthy language of nature, with a deeply romantic humanity; these poems are more than simply verse. Their power still resonates across the centuries, and will be forever loved.
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Lyrical Ballads is really a collection of poems by Wordsworth. The contribution by Coleridge is minor although in itself a major poem. For me this was a good introduction to the Lake Poets (in conjunction with York Notes).
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Recommend it if you are an A Level student studying lyrical ballads. Contains all of the poems that my class are studying, small but really good
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